By Frank Lewis
January 3, 2014
PDT Staff Writer
The execution team at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville will, for the first time, use a an IV of just Midazolam and Hydromorphone, when it executes Dennis McGuire on Jan. 16.
McGuire, 53, of Preble County, was sentenced to death for killing Joy Stewart in 1989, who was pregnant at the time.
Midazolam is a sedative and Hydromorphone is a painkiller. The execution formula was decided on when SOCF warden Donald Morgan notified Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections officials that there was not a sufficient quantity of Pentobarbital, a drug used in lethal injections, available at his facility.
The state had originally planned to use that formula when executing Ronald Phillips, who was scheduled to be put to death in November, but that execution was put on hold while the state studies the feasibility of his request to donate a kidney to his mother and his heart to his sister. Phillips was convicted of raping and murdering the three-year-old daughter of his girlfriend.
Prior to Phillips’ scheduled execution on Nov. 14 at Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville, SOCF warden Donald Morgan notified Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections officials that there is not a sufficient quantity of Pentobarbital, a drug used in lethal injections, available at his facility.
Ricky Seyfang of ODRC told the Daily Times that because of the shortage of Penobarbital, executions will proceed with the other two drugs. The scheduled execution will proceed with intravenous administration of Midazolam and Hydromorphone, in accordance with the terms of Policy 01-COM-11 which has been in place since Oct. 10. According to that policy, if the state does not have sufficient quantities of Pentobarbital available, the execution will proceed with only the other two drugs.
The Ohio Parole Board recommended against clemency in McGuire’s case.
Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.